Tubepol is a company founded in 2012 by two graduates of the National University of Mexico (UNAM).
Engineers, chemist Adrian Cordero Ibarra and civil Jorge Pérez Gavilán Paz created a comprehensive technology to renew piping without the need of excavation, ensuring it lasts 50 years — 25 more than a traditional one.
With their method Polymer Pipe Cured in Site (TPCs) they resolve problems of leaks, cracks or filtrations in pipes that have fulfilled their useful life. The price is equivalent to the civil work, but with great savings in social given there is no need of closing shops, stopping traffic or damage public facilities.
The founders detail that Tubepol began with the concern of creating a technology that could rehabilitate pipes without having to drill. “We were in college and approached the System of Business Incubators InnovaUNAM to find ways to develop our idea. There we found support, advice and training in management, accounting and marketing. We started to find the solution and the right formula to develop our products,“ explained Adrian Cordero, CEO of the company.
“Our barriers were always money and lack of confidence from the people towards us because we are young; so one of the key points of our company is that we believe a lot that we can do it, we are trust the Mexican engineering and that there are opportunities for young people, so we want to be an example of doing important things in this subject.”
According to information provided by the team, in Mexico City there are 26 thousand kilometers of water pipes and drainage, of which about eight thousand are useless, causing risk of collapse and cuts in the service.
The rehabilitation process with Tubepol is integral. Without excavating, first they perform a video inspection by feeding a camera through the pipe. That way, they can watch the images in real time and identify the problem promptly. With the obtain data they plan the rehabilitation process.
“We designed a polyester felt sleeve, which is like a bag the size of the pipe that inside has a felt and on the outside a plastic layer; we impregnate it with a resin, take it to the site and through an access point, which is usually a strainer or a valve box, inflate the balloon and with steam provoke the resin to harden along with the felt creating a new pipe inside of the damaged one,” said the UNAM graduate.
Tubepol can rehabilitate pipes from four inches in diameter to 72, reducing economic costs and time by manufacturing a pipe in one night of 100 or 150 meters long, in comparison with conventional methods that can take up to three weeks.
Other advantages are quick installation, structural strength, increased flow capacity and a solution to infiltration.
It also offers cleaning and desludging services to prevent flooding, and the sale of ADS pipe, corrugated high density polyethylene, resistant to ultraviolet rays, one hundred percent of tightness, is light and easy to install.
Currently, the company emerged that from the UNAM is the only one in Latin America that designs, produces and runs the rehabilitation of pipes. After the achievements they have made the National Water Commission (Conagua) of Mexico endorses its technology, providing technical and policy support.
“In the end, the satisfaction we feel when we see that one of the ideas we had while being in the university is supported and became a company in which many people work, and also offers a valuable service for customers with social resonance, is invaluable. Now we are looking for companies to acquire the technology and take it across the country, “the entrepreneur Adrian Cordero Ibarra concluded.
Filed Under: Infrastructure